Monday, June 9, 2008

School, decisions, news and painting.

Eldest is officially enrolled in one of the local high schools, not a school I am excited about, which I find a little tough, but..............well..............we'll wait and see.

As I was handing in my thousand and one photocopies (of which I had everything asked for and then some) I also handed them a notice, in Catalan, from the local hydro company about how the excessive use and abuse of paper is harming our world.

Sadly, she just looked confused.


I went in the hills walking the Chuckster...goodness I like having a dog much more than I ever thought would be possible. I was irritated with myself for walking in our beautiful hills with only a week and a half till we leave for the summer, on a spectacular day and having my head down the entire time fussing about all the crap I am trying to deal with right now.

I COULD not get my head to stop talking. I am not a great Buddhist, so what usually works for me is to stop everything and work it through till I have a plan. That is just what I did. There is a lovely rock in the hills, well, there are several, but it is a logical stopping place for us, so I cushioned my head with my jacket and lay back gazing at the branches over my head and said I wouldn't leave till I had a plan. Chuck curled up beside me, all cozied in, and I worked it out.

Aside from the giant bureaucracy chase I am running, this summer is not knitting together neatly at all, and I am feeling very torn by the demands on me. I simply cannot make everyone happy, so what I essentially did was decide WHO I was going to try hardest to help out, who less so, and who to kindly let one fortunately, but I have made some decisions. Then I was OK....I came home and started putting things into place and I am much happier for that. I cannot say that Chuck really contributed to the dialogue, but it was really really nice to have his company.

I am also feeling crappy because we're leaving him here this year, I won't see him for two and a half months and I feel like a jerk. He's going to be really upset.

Enough whinging.

I was also thinking today about various media outlets: the man tends to prefer the traditional media, for the last several years primarily radio...we don't own a TV, newspaper delivery when traveling on a boat is tricky, and the radio is free, and doesn't add to the garbage or recycling.

I chiefly read blogs. A range of blogs. Strangely enough I find I am generally as up to date as he is....maybe not quite as globally, but in the last couple of days I had heard about the heat in Canada and Northern Europe, and I had heard about the upcoming transit strikes in Europe (all but public transit stopped). I also have read insider's reports about the elections and subsequent chaos in Kenya, the goings on in Burkina Faso, and issues pertaining to the American military presence in Iraq.

It is interesting that there is this entire new field of news sources, self-published, self-edited and openly available. If you read widely enough, there is a balance of views from which you can make your decision; I never like simply parroting the editorials, but prefer to look at the primary material and make up my own mind thankyouverymuch. It is fascinating, the un-agenda-ed, or at least micro-agenda-ed writing that you find in blogs. We do not write in fear of the advertiser's opinions, nor the editor's, nor the newspaper or radio station owner's either.

I find it an entrancing sideways slide into what is going on in the world.

Here at last, for me anyway, are some updates on the painting front, and if I can ever get off the bureaucratic paper-chasing merry-go-round, I might actually finish something before I have to leave.

That would be nice.

This one hasn't changed that much, I have toned down the frame and the background, and I have to trim it so it is centered, as the man pointed out..good think I am a teacher not a NASA scientist, or a tool and die maker....

This blue one changed a bit more, please be forgiving these are works in progress. I will be painting a focus piece on, a fish...this is not how I normally work, but this piece is homework for an on-line painting class.

The one below I have dubbed the monster, and I am really going to have to pull something out of the hat to save it, it is very heavily textured and not really laying back at all.

Please remember that they are works in progress and it is kind of making my throat go tight to post the photos up...I am much less happy with the photos than with where I am going to try an make them go, which unfortunately you cannot see.

The painting below I did finish. Eldest called it kitchy, the man said it was top heavy. I really like it; so there. It comes from something I saw while the man and I were walking around in a small town in Andalucia one day this Christmas, so maybe I haven't conveyed that, but I like it.

Do I sound defensive or what?

Time for bed, hope you had a lovely, bureaucracy-free day.


Anonymous said...

Buddhists have a special *in* with the universe because they have their serene temples and stuff - the rest of us have to make do with walks in the hills with loyal canine companions.

Or walks by the lake with the iPod.

Works for me.

Glad you came up with a plan - I can sleep when I have a plan, otherwise I'm toast.

Your paintings are lovely as usual :)

elPadawan said...

I'm sure Chuck *did* help by standing there. He was the calming-down piece of the puzzle that helped you focus and come up with your plan :)

Anonymous said...

Don't worry too much about leaving the dog behind - SAVE SOME ENERGY AND THOUGHT FOR YOURSELF, please!
Remember raving about fixing yourself dishes of local vegetables in early spring?
The last of that lovely, mild and delicious extra virgin olive oil you gave me in Feb is making my spinach dishes famous among my Riga friends.
I now have several market women who save me their best home-grown kinds and I keep finding new Thank you very much!!! GM

Beth said...

Time-outs to reflect and prioritize are essential for our sanity. We just have to remember to take the time to do it!
You must not be so defensive about displaying your (lovely) works-in-progress. I think it's wonderful that you're sharing your creative process with us.
And don't fret about leaving Chuck behind. He's young enough to adapt and recover from your absence. (My dog - a different story.)

(If I don't get some satisfaction today re: the roof, I'll be in touch.)

hulagirlatheart said...

The monster-"it is very heavily textured and not really laying back at all." Kind of like your day?? I like your paintings, especially the monster.

The good thing about Chuckster's company is that he didn't talk back or argue and he was content with your decisions, no matter what they were.

oreneta said...

Trish, yeah, some kind of contingency plan = a good nights sleep.

elPadawan, I think you're right.

GM, it always always always pays to make friends with the market ladies, this I have learned.

Beth, thank you, as an experienced dog owner, that really helps...on another note, how's the roof? I haven't heard from you so I am hoping it's OK....

Hula, "The good thing about Chuckster's company is that he didn't talk back or argue and he was content with your decisions, no matter what they were."

so says the mother of one teenage daughter to the other.

AMEN sister.

Beth said...

maybe just a wee bit defensive, but you're allowed....I like it too. and I lOVE the blue one!!!

and poor Chuck! What will he ever do without you? But just think when you get home, how happy he'll be to see you!!!

oreneta said...

Beth, yes indeed if he is not really angry with me....I don't think he has that in him.

Nomad said...

From one super-obsessed-I-can-do-it-all-SUPER-MOM to another...Do not fret, it will all work out.

I think these periods of stress are a gift as they cause us to re-evaluate. If we are wise we choose to stick with the things that sing for us.

Really at the end of the day what else is there?

I feLt calmer just reading your patch of peace in the sun story, sounded lovely, and yes alwfully nice to have a warm dog cuddled up...

I too completely understand your frustration about not being able to be present due ot other distractions...It is sometimes so important to take some moments out to really think, not always easy.

The older I get the more I am able to work on living consciously, being present, feels better than anything.

You go girl, it will all work out.

Love ya!

oreneta said...

Nomad, you are the best. It has it's moments doesn't it.

elPadawan said...

"I alwayz ham, deer. I alwayz ham" :D